China seeking advice on deporting 1,000 EB-5 immigrants from US and recover assets in what may be the first cases of G20 “denial of safe haven” policy

By Christine Duhaime | May 29th, 2014

Removal of Foreign Nationals & Asset Recovery

According to several news reports, such as the one here, the government of China is in discussions with the US government (and firms) regarding the process to deport or extradict former Chinese nationals believed to have immigrated with billions of dollars in proceeds of crime from corruption.

There is apparently a list of over 1,000 such Chinese nationals, all former public officials, who obtained immigration status in the US under the US EB-5 program.

Politically Exposed Persons

Discussions have also apparently centered around the fact that the list of 1,000 are all politically exposed persons (“PEP“) in money laundering law and it is likely that additionally, there have been discussions regarding potential exposure of American banks and other advisors to asset recovery repatriation claims in cases where services were provided to EB-5 PEP applicants from China without complying with PEP rules.

Possible first cases of Denial of Safe Haven policy

Last year at the G20 meetings, the government of China signed on to the global “denial of safe haven” policy proposed by the Anti-Corrution Working Group. The denial of safe haven policy is designed to ensure that countries are not facilitators of financial crimes committed by high net worth foreign nationals by giving them and the proceeds of crime they bring with them, a safe haven. Under the “denial of safe haven” plan, in cases where foreign nationals have already immigrated, the accepting country (in this case the US), would agree to repatriate assets and use deportation, rather than extradition, to return foreign nationals to their country of origin for prosecution. Foreign nationals who export proceeds of crime usually export funds years in advance and park them in a transitory jurisdiction pending immigration approval. Asset recovery usually involves tracing funds through several countries for repatriation.

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